"Evil is powerless if the good are unafraid" - Ronald Reagan

New York

Update: Is man made (anthropogenic) effects causing global warming? Yes, So far it accounts for about a 0.0000189°C increase.

About a year ago, I blogged about whether or not man made (anthropogenic) effects caused global warming. The conclusion reached then was that increases in CO2 concentration did not cause a significant increase in temperatures. In fact, it was concluded that the sun accounted for the changes. This assertion has now been proven with work conducted by Henrik Svensmark (et al).

Mr. Svensmark concludes that cosmic radiation is responsible for increases or decreases in the Mean Global Temperature (MGT) of the Earth. But if cosmic radiation is relatively constant in the universe, why would there be a change in cosmic radiation on the Earth over different time periods?

Mr. Svensmark shows a direct relationship between sunspot activity, the sun's magnetic field, solar wind and the amount of cosmic radiation that reaches the Earth. During times of high sun activity, which we are seeing now, proportionally less cosmic radiation hits the Earth resulting in less lower cloud cover thereby resulting in an increase in MGT. During the Climate Optimum (900-1100), the sun activity was closer to what it is today, resulting in very temperate weather. During the Little Ice Age (1300-1800), sun activity was minimal resulting in extremely cold, gloomy temperatures.

Mr. Svensmark goes on to state the the 2% decrease in cloud cover of the last five years accounts for 85% of the temperature increase the IPCC has contributed to increases in CO2 concentration.

Therefore, as stated earlier, increases in CO2 concentration are not significantly affecting temperature changes.

That big bright ball, called the Sun, that brings the MGT from -270°C to 12°C is responsible for the current temperate climate we are enjoying. Variations in the Sun's activity is currently responsible for a increase of the MGT of 1.785°C to an MGT of 13.8°C. Given that the current MGT of the Earth is 14.1°C, that means at most, increase CO2 concentrations are responsible for a 0.03°C temperature increase.

But since atmospheric water vapor is responsible for about 94% of greenhouse temperature variations, this means that all other greenhouse gases (to include increased CO2 concentrations) can only account for about 0.0018°C temperature increase. Given that methane accounts for 15-20% of a greenhouse effect and CFCs contribute another 25%, this leaves CO2 to account for at most 60% or a rise or 0.00108°C. Since CO2 has recently doubled, this means this doubling of CO2 concentration can only account for a rise of 0.00054°C.

Finally, since manmade (anthropogenic) CO2 accounts for about 3.5% of the whole annual contribution from natural sources (decaying plants, geothermal systems/volcanoes, limestone erosion, forest fires, and respiration from plants and animals, this leave only 0.0000189°C to actually be attributed man made CO2 concentration.

Hat Tip to Junkscience.com for introducing me to this recent article.

Another sign we are winning the Global War on Terror.

TCS Daily has a good article on the mindset of Al Qaeda as it analyzes a recently released letter from "Atiyah" to Zarqawi.

The letter contains strong evidence of fear, doubt and impending defeat on the part of Al Qaeda. It appears that five years of war and defeat in battles have shaken the 9/11 certitude of al-Qaida's senior fanatics.

This is why operations like Operation Medusa that killed 1,1oo Taliban in Afghanistan are so important. This is why Operation Forward Together in Baghdad is so important. The enemy see President Bush as an anomoly. While many past presidents have left once US troops died (Reagan in Beruit, Clinton in Somalia), Bush seems to be staying the course despite low approval ratings. His recent public speeches stating that it doesn't matter who wins Congress, he will not leave while he is President is so essential to our effort. Similarly, it is also why the cut and run policies of the Democratic leadership is so damaging.

War is hell. I have been there. However, war is also grueling and wears on both sides. The side that it wears the less on usually wins in the long run. For all our technology, wars are still about attrition. Technology has made major combat operations less about attrition, but results in a insurgency that still must be attrited as the enemy is not completely destroyed during major combat operations.

The firebombing of Dresden and the loss of millions of troops were some of acts that resulted in the utter defeat of Germany during WWII and once at Berlin, Germany unconditionally surrendered. However, smart bombs target the enemy's means to wage war, resulting in Armies removing their uniforms and fighting an insurgency. This is what we are seeing in Afghanistan and Iraq. It is not that President Bush and the military did not have a plan for Phase IV, it is that modern warfare ensures Phase IV becomes the decisive battle as opposed to a mopping up operation.

We are in decisive battle. We are winning. Al Qaeda is losing. They are on their last leg. 1,100 dead Taliban prove this fact despite the fact that they now have a base in Waziristan to operate from. 25 of 31 Anbar tribes fighting against the insurgency in Iraq prove this fact. Hundreds of tribes joining Maliki's national reconciliation plan prove this fact.

Now is not the time to cut and run. Now is the time to finish the job so our children don't have too.

Americans are tired, but so too is our enemy. The difference is that after a year our forces get to come home and be with their families, watch TV, enjoy their freedoms, and forget the war. Our enemy, on the otherhand, only has a cold, damp cave. That is the way to win this war.

Nasrallah told Lebanese Parliament of Kidnapping on 29 Jun 06.

The Washington Post, has an interesting chronology leading up to the start of the Israeli-Hezbollah war. Why the angle of the story taken has much to be desired, the chronology is interesting to say the least.

02 Mar 06: National Dialogue started between Druze Jumblatt, Hezbollah Nasrallah, Christian Aoun, and Saad Hariri, son of the slain Lebanese leader. The discussed relations with Syria, the presence of armed Palestinians, the future of the isolated pro-Syrian president, and Hezbollah's weapons. The most contested issue was obviously Hezbollhah's disarmanent required by UNSC Resolution 1559.

08 Jun 06: Nasrallah speaks to Parliment to defend Hezbollah's weapons offering the following points:
  • It provided a cover to the Lebanese state; in any battle with Israel, Hezbollah would suffer the consequences of Israeli reprisals, not the rest of the country.
  • Hezbollah had created a deterrent -- in the words of one participant, "a balance of fear and terror."
  • The Lebanese army alone was not enough to protect a border that Israeli routinely violates by air and sometimes by sea.

29 Jun 06: Nasrallah again defends Hezbollah weapon's saying it was a "balance of fear and terror" and stated that Lebanon needed to capture Israeli Soldiers "as leverage to win the release of three Lebanese prisoners."

25 Jul 06: This was supposed to be the date of the last session of the National Dialogue where Nasrallah was supposed to bring "proof that the deterrence philosophy would work".

Well, we all know what happened on 12 Jul 06, Hezbollah invaded Israel and captured two Israeli Soldiers. It is now apparent that this was going to be the proof that the Lebanese government asked for during the National Dialogue. A couple of hours after the kidnapping, Hassan, sitting in a meeting of the Committee of Public Works received a phone call to which he stated to the committee, "Congratulations, our hostages will be coming home soon." Around the same time, another Hezbollah member of Parliament broke the same news to another committee. Parliamentary members all knew Hezbollah was going to try something and were not shocked by this message.

In addition, Goksel, the former spokesman for the U.N. force, watched Hezbollah build bunkers in Southern Lebanon since 2001 in and around UN positions. They were obviously building an integrated defense for an eventual Israeli attack even though the UN force was responsible for the border. His statement is unbelievable in that he said, "Looking back, they really fooled us on that one."

So, what we have here is the Lebanese government engaging in a National Dialogue, mainly centered on the disarmanent of Hezbollah since many members of the Lebanese Parliament did not see Israel as a threat as the UN was patrolling/securing the Blue Line. Nasrallah tells the Parliament that he wants to capture Israeli Soldiers to win the release of three Hezbollah prisoners. Parliament members shrug this statement off, but insist that Nasrallah bring proof of Hezbollah's deterrence. Nasrallah, for his part, kidnaps two Israeli Soldiers and starts the Israeli-Hezbollah War.

One point I will concide to the Lebanese Parliament and Nasrallah. Both did not believe Israel would respond with such viracity. But, that does not forgive a nation for starting a deadly conflict trying to prove its deterrence. That would be akin to the US during the height of the Cold War saying, "Hey, lets disprove Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD) by launching a nuclear bomb over Moscow. I mean come on, what were these people thinking?

Israel had withdrawn from Lebanon in 2000. The withdraw south of Blue Line had been confirmed by the UN, and UN forces were on the ground to prevent an Israeli move north of the Blue Line. Lebanon was finally rid of direct Syrian influence since the Hariri murder. Lebanon was on its way back to economic prosperity and this was supposed to be a great summer for tourism after several years of no hostility with its Southern neighbor.

Yet Nasrallah stated on 29 Jun 06, three days after Hamas kidnapped Cpl Shalit, that Hezbollah was going to kidnap Israeli Soldiers to win release of three Lebanese prisoners. Nobody thought that Israel would respond violently when they were still responding violently in Gaza after Cpl Shalit was kidnapped just three days before?

Again, what were these Parliamentary members thinking?